Bennett Cerf was born in 1898 in Manhattan and graduated from Columbia
University with a degree in journalism. In 1925 he acquired the Modern Library
with Donald Klopfer, providing the foundation for Random House Publishing. "I've
got the name for our publishing operation. We just said we would publish a few
books on the side at random. Let's call it Random House." Two years later the
Random House colophon made its debut. Cerf was part of the vanguard of young New
York publishers who revolutionized the business in the 1920s and 30s. He died in 1971.